Prepare for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2: Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit 4.0 Beta
Article by George Norman
On 22 Jun 2009
With the Microsoft developed Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R1 operating systems just around the corner (RTM in July, GA on the 22nd of October) you might be already envisioning how you will deploy them at an enterprise level. To address your need to seamlessly upgrade to the next iteration of the Windows-based operating system, the Redmond-based software giant has released Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit (MAP) 4.0 Beta to customers and partners.

“Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit 4.0 is an integrated planning toolkit that makes it easier for Microsoft customers and partners to quickly identify what servers, workstations, and network devices are in their IT environment. This agentless and scalable toolkit has the ability to discover all computers within Active Directory and workgroup environments. It performs key functions that include hardware and device inventory, hardware compatibility analysis, and generation of actionable, environment-specific IT proposals for migration to most major Microsoft technologies,” explains Senior Technical Account Manager with Microsoft, Nick MacKechnie.


Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit (MAP) 4.0 comes with the following new features:
- Windows 7 Hardware and Device Compatibility Assessment
- Windows Server 2008 R2 Hardware and Device Compatibility Assessment
- Virtualization Candidates Assessment for Hyper-V R2 Server Consolidation
- Integration with the Microsoft Integrated Virtualization ROI Calculator
- Inventory of VMware Server Hosts and Guests
- User Interface and Proposal Customization for Partner co-branding
- Enhanced Usability and Improved Inventory Performance

According to Microsoft, to date, about 680,000 customers and partners hade downloaded and used the MAP toolkit and you are very well advised to join them. Why should you do that? Simply because there are some advantages to using Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit (MAP) 4.0:
- MAP saves planning or pre-sales time.
- MAP comes with inventory and readiness assessment reports with environment-specific upgrade recommendations and virtualization candidate reports.
- MAP covers a wide range of scenarios, ranging from desktop PCs to servers.

If you would like to get MAP 4.0 Beta, a download location is available here.

UPDATE: Microsoft is offering a Zune digital media player to the tester that files the best bug in MAP 4.0 Beta (details here).

For the regular user that wants to know if his system can be upgraded to Windows 7, Microsoft has another Beta offering: Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor.

Tags: Microsoft, Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, MAP toolkit, Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit 4.0 Beta
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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